Wounded being evacuated from the scene
Photo: AFP
Livni. Hatred must be dealt with
Photo: Dudi Vaaknin
Ron Huldai. Tel Aviv outpost of pluralism
Photo: Yaron Brener

Livni on TA shooting: Society must shake off prejudice

Following murder of two youths in alleged hate crime against gay and lesbian community, Opposition chairwoman says 'this event must shake up society and its institutions, including political and educational institutions.' Labor MK Yacimovich: Shooting was result of continual incitement

All ends of the political spectrum have condemned Saturday's murder spree at the gay and lesbian youth center in Tel Aviv that claimed the lives of two. Opposition Chairwoman Tzipi Livni said Sunday, "Hatred exists, and we need to deal with it. This difficult event must be a wake-up call for the society to shake off its prejudices, to accept and recognize the right of every person to a safe and dignified life."


Livni expressed her sorrow and shock at the event and asked that everything possible be done to grapple with the incident's repercussions, even before all details of the incident are known.


"The incident must shake up the society and all its institutions, including the political and educational institutions. It needs to send an unequivocal message against all intolerance, incitement, and violence and a message to take action against their expression," said the opposition chairwoman.


MK Shelly Yacimovich (Labor), who, being close by the shooting when it happened, immediately arrived at the site upon hearing of the event, said, "This is a horrifying incident of murdering innocent people only because they belonged to the gay community. The gun that fired off was a result of continual incitement against the gay and lesbian community."


Yacimovich called upon the police not to close down gay clubs, but rather to provide proper security for them.


Shas published a response saying that the party condemns all use of violence: "The perpetrator should be located quickly and be brought to justice. Murder, of course, is against the way of the Torah and any offense is in opposition of the religion of Israel."

Investigators at the scene of the crime (Photo: AP)


Hours after the deadly attack, signs calling for an "end to homophobia" and flags of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community were placed at the scene of the shooting, as a silent testimony to the horror which took place there on Saturday night.


MK Nissim Zeev (Shas) said that the signs held at the Tel Aviv rally following the attack holding him responsible for the sad incident because of his past statements against the gay community were a "blood libel" against him.


Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai expressed his shock over the incident on Sunday morning, saying that the city "has been since its inception a stronghold of pluralism, tolerance, and openness, and no one will damage the character of the city.


"We will continue to provide a warm home for the gay community in our city, and we will fight for the right of every person to live his life in our city according to his belief and conscience," he added.


Gunshots from an automatic weapon where heard at the gay youth center in the heart of Tel Aviv at around 10:40 pm. A man dressed in black escaped from the place, and was later seen near Rothschild Boulevard.


Ten people wounded in the shooting are still hospitalized. Seven of the injured were operated on throughout the night, and two others were expected to undergo surgery for the removal of shrapnel and bullets.


Two of the injured were hospitalized in serious condition at the Sourasky Medical Center's intensive care unit. Two other people, one in serious condition and the other suffering from moderate wounds, were also hospitalized at the Tel Aviv medical center.


Another person in serious condition was hospitalized at the Chaim Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer, where he is being anaesthetized and is hooked up to a respirator. Three other patients are in light to moderate condition. Two people were hospitalized in light condition at the Wolfson Medical Center in Holon.


פרסום ראשון: 08.02.09, 10:37
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